About the Author

Shannon Lauffer

I stepped into my first art room in 2007, lugging my methods textbooks, studio supplies from undergrad, and a slew of lesson planning books. I was 21 and ready to change the world. I was the only art teacher in my district and split my part-time role across two schools. A real-life “art teacher on a lonely island,” I was starving to grow and learn.

I went back to school for special education, which helped me better understand all my students and made me more marketable. I loved it, but I couldn’t hack the after-school commute, so I started looking for online graduate courses.

I discovered The Art of Education. I was already an avid blog reader and decided to try out a course. I took one and was hooked. Fast-forward a couple of years later, I’d taken almost every AOE course, finished my master’s +30, and was the lucky recipient of an email that changed my trajectory. “The Art of Ed is hiring.” In what felt like a dream, I joined the AOE faculty.

In 2015, seven art rooms and nine years of teaching later, I packed up my textbooks and art supplies, scrawled a note to my successor, and left the art room to join AOE full-time. As the dean of student services of what’s now AOEU, I help other art teachers find the relevant graduate work I found years ago. I’m passionate about helping art teachers learn more, earn more, advocate for themselves, and believe in themselves. I love helping teachers push against the stereotypes of art teachers and the status quo of art education. I believe that art teachers deserve community, camaraderie, and collaboration that their schools sometimes can’t afford them. I am honored to serve as one tiny piece of the puzzle that helps art teachers who are starving to grow and learn.

What do I do when I’m not working? I have two darling, well-fed cats and a blue parakeet named Paige, who loves to say, “You’re so pretty cute!” I’m working on my doctorate and want to live in every city I visit.


Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership

Northcentral University, La Jolla, CA  |  Anticipated Graduation 2023

Master of Arts in Teaching

Morningside College, Sioux City, IA  |  Graduation 2015

Graduate Studies in Special Education

Kean University, Union, NJ  |  Certificate of Completion 2011

Bachelor of Science in Art Education

Indiana University, Bloomington, IN   |  Graduation 2007


Voices for Any Given Child Indy: The Arts Give Students a Voice, 2016

AOEU Accomplishments

Team Member of the Year, 2019

Posts by Shannon

Content Type
  • All
  • Article
  • Podcast
  • Video
  • All
  • Assessment
  • Classroom Management
  • Curriculum
  • Instructional Strategies
  • News
  • Professionalism
  • Studio Practices
  • All
  • Assessment Design
  • Assessment Implementation
  • Expectations
  • Physical Space
  • Relationship Building
  • Curriculum Approaches
  • Curriculum Design
  • Differentiation
  • Engagement
  • Advocacy
  • Professional Learning
  • Professional Practice
  • Connections
  • Creativity
  • Media & Techniques
Professional Learning

6 Tips to Get Your School District to Say “Yes” to Tuition Reimbursement

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
Professional Learning

Understanding Financial Aid and Loan Options for Your Master’s Degree

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
Image of a person writing a calculation
Professional Learning

Leverage Your Salary Schedule in 3 Easy Steps

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
calendar, planning sheet, and glasses on desk

5 Reasons You’ll Love Collaborating With Your Academic Advisor

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
woman working at computer
Professional Practice

How to Create the Best AOEU Application Possible

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
Professional Learning

How to Fund Your Master’s Degree Program

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
coffee cup that says "begin"
Professional Practice

5 Things to Do During Your First Month in a New Teaching Position

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
adaptive art room schedule

What You Need to Know About Inclusive Education in the Art Room

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
Fiona's print
Media & Techniques

Have You Ever Done Printmaking Like THIS?

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
Amy's artwork

The Perfect Tool to Help You Invest in Your Own Creativity

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
30 reinforcers download

Everything You Need to Know to Set Your Students With Autism Up for Success

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article
nature materials
Curriculum Approaches

A Design Challenge for Environmentally Conscious Art Teachers

Art of Education Magazine & Media Article